Tuesday, July 29, 2014

29 July 2014

In Ramadi, army and police forces have attempted to retake the city's western districts that have been controlled by the armed groups for more than two weeks. Fierce clashes erupted along the edges of those districts, but the security forces were unable to penetrate into them. We do not yet have any casualty details.

In Fallujah and Al-Garma, bombardment is still continuing, as have intermittent clashes.

The Eid al-Fitr's accoutrements have virtually disappeared from Anbar, particularly in the areas experiencing military operations. We have been living here all our lives and we are citizens first and journalists second, but we have seen the total absence of any Eid-related signs or activity, as has been the case in previous similar occasions. The degradation of the security situation and the indiscriminate shelling and bombardment, the plight of the more than 500,000 displaced Anbaris are still suffering under dire living conditions. There is a sense of fear, particularly in the areas controlled by the gunmen who consider exhibiting joy during the Eid to be frivolously unacceptable and contrary to Shari'a teachings. Thus, both the areas held by the government and those under the control of the gunmen are experienced fear of either renewed attacks or gunmen's reprisals.

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